ir·​ri·​ta·​ble | \ ˈir-ə-tə-bəl How to pronounce irritable (audio) \

Definition of irritable

: capable of being irritated: such as
a : easily exasperated or excited gets irritable when he tires
b : responsive to stimuli

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Other Words from irritable

irritableness noun
irritably \ ˈir-​ə-​tə-​blē How to pronounce irritable (audio) \ adverb

Examples of irritable in a Sentence

My father is always irritable after a nap. I came home from work feeling tired and irritable.
Recent Examples on the Web Yet there has always been something irritable and overwrought about Franzen’s incarnation of the social novel. Laura Marsh, The New York Review of Books, 5 Apr. 2018 Similarly, teens may also become more irritable, sad and withdrawn. Marion Hart, Forbes, 15 Sep. 2021 Her stock characters have hardly evolved: The story once again revolves around eccentrically irritable and conspicuously thin white women and their implausibly hot and tolerant white suitors who range from the professional to the working class. Jane Hu, Vulture, 3 Sep. 2021 Parents worked 13-hour days, fended off irritable customers, inhaled potentially hazardous chemicals. Los Angeles Times, 31 July 2021 The child began spending more time online, in addition to attending school virtually, and became irritable and withdrawn., 7 Aug. 2021 Batool has become irritable, weeps often and in the evenings is terrified, waking every 20 or 30 minutes. Arkansas Online, 24 July 2021 Such events are usually all-consuming and easy to point to as reasons for feeling irritable or unhappy. Tess Joosse, Scientific American, 24 June 2021 That was my husband — frustrated, irritable and detached. New York Times, 19 July 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'irritable.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of irritable

1662, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for irritable

Time Traveler

The first known use of irritable was in 1662

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Dictionary Entries Near irritable



irritable bowel syndrome

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Statistics for irritable

Last Updated

19 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Irritable.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 23 Oct. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of irritable

: becoming angry or annoyed easily


ir·​ri·​ta·​ble | \ ˈir-ə-tə-bəl How to pronounce irritable (audio) \

Kids Definition of irritable

: easily made angry or annoyed Hunger makes me irritable.

Other Words from irritable

irritably \ -​blē \ adverb


ir·​ri·​ta·​ble | \ ˈir-ət-ə-bəl How to pronounce irritable (audio) \

Medical Definition of irritable

: characterized by irritability: as
a : easily exasperated or excited
b : responsive to stimuli

More from Merriam-Webster on irritable

Nglish: Translation of irritable for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of irritable for Arabic Speakers


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